North Pole Cake


This was not the original cake. I made this cake with leftover ingredients from the original cake project, and I don’t think I can or should post a picture of that cake because it’s, well…indecent. Rather pornographic actually. The first “naughty” cake in my portfolio of cakes.

I hadn’t exactly set out to make a naughty cake. I was going to make a regular cake for K’s birthday. But when I asked her what she wanted for her birthday cake, she said “bachelorette”. She’s been pretty blue of late, and she thought it would cheer her up. Who was I to say no? How different would it really be from any other sculpted cake I would make? Well, other than the subject matter…and the fact that I wouldn’t really be able to show off the pictures.

What says “bachelorette” better than man parts? The question was what context to put them in. A cake shaped like standalone man parts just seemed weird. And a bit of a cop-out. Even though architecturally it would have been pretty darn hard, (heh heh…pardon the pun!) it would’ve just been all peach fondant. Yawn! That’s where the inspiration came in. I’m not sure where it came from exactly, but I was inspired alright…inspired to present the man parts in a top-down view, resting within unzipped pants after a quickie, surrounded by the resulting detritus.

Once I had the vision, the project became about execution, and I was no longer even thinking about the racy nature of the cake, but rather how to make it one of my best cakes ever. I like a lot of detail in my cakes, so I was up until 3am finding ways to make it visually accurate, relatively anatomically correct, and uniquely Kristen.

I want my cakes to be so visually engaging that you want to keep looking at it to find all of the different things worked into the design. The resulting bachelorette cake, while incredibly raunchy, was hilarious. There may have been an exact replica of the torn, empty wrapper of a popular male contraceptive, Levi’s jeans, and a miniature sea turtle. (That had nothing to do with the scene, but is a joke with K and me.) I will spare you the details of what it looked the “Happy Birthday” was written out of. But I will tell you that the flesh-colored fondant was pretty good for man parts, but it’s difficult to find the right fondant color for a used condom.

Everyone who joined in the birthday celebration laughed uproariously at the cake. And we hated to cut into it. While I love making them, and know that every one of these pieces of artwork will be quickly demolished, I always have a moment when I don’t want to cut them. I want to preserve them forever, even though I know I can’t. The very fact that they are made of a perishable material and therefore completely temporal whether we eat them or not is quite the analogy for every beautiful moment in life, isn’t it?

Philosophy aside, I want my cakes to do more than look good. They have to taste great too. Even better than they look, I think, since beautiful sculpture should not be an excuse for lousy cake. Both have to be great for the cake art. This one was a lush, rich, chocolate cake with an apricot filling, inspiring a lot of amusing comments like “OMG, [blank] tastes like chocolate?! That’s awesome!”

I constructed the cake base from a 9×13 sheet cake, and the man parts from one 9″ round cake. Since I’d doubled the cake recipe, I had an entire 9″ round cake left over and a lot of white buttercream that I’d used on the bachelorette cake as crumb coating. My imagination was working overtime because as I soon as I looked at the leftover buttercream, I immediately thought snow/North Pole. I soaked the cake overnight in Baileys (representing absolutely nothing about the North Pole, but somehow sounding like a wintery hot chocolate). I frosted the liquor soaked cake in the vanilla buttercream, then sculpted this cute North Pole scene. Between the seal and the penguin, I think I was even more proud of this cake than the man parts one.


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